The Pennsylvania Integrated Pest Management Program (PA IPM) is a collaboration between the PA Department of Agriculture and the Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences (view the 1998 Memorandum of Understanding between PDA and PSU). The mission of this program is to promote effective pest management that results in the efficient protection of our food, fiber, health, home and industrial resources in a manner that is profitable, safe and environmentally compatible.
In order to maintain inter-institutional collaboration, management and staffing is distributed between Penn State University and the PA Department of Agriculture. There are two coordinators and eight staff members that presently manage the PA IPM program. One staff member and one coordinator work at the Department of Agriculture Plant Industry Division, with the rest of the staff working out of the Penn State University Department of Entomology.
PA IPM is informed by several stakeholder groups. We have an IPM Statewide Advisory Committee made up of members representing Pennsylvania government agencies, industries, and non-governmental organizations. The committe meets four times per year to address IPM issues, policies and programs.
In order to gather information about Penn State's IPM research, education and outreach needs and activities, PA IPM interacts with Penn State's College of Ag Extension IPM Committee. Annual mini grants are also distributed by this Extension Committee to promote IPM locally.
In addition to interactions with formal committees, PA IPM often communicates directly with client groups throughout the state. Likewise, through the office of the IPM Coordinator, PA IPM is linked with regional, federal, and international IPM bodies.
The mission of The Pennsylvania Integrated Pest Management Program is to promote effective pest management that results in the efficient protection of our food, fiber, health, home, and industrial resources in a manner that is profitable, safe, environmentally compatible, and sustainable. This mission will be accomplished by supporting research to develop and/or improve IPM programs through public education, education of IPM practitioners, and implementation of IPM programs. In support of this mission, specific goals of the program are:
- Develop and maintain an on-going, cooperative, interactive relationship with IPM stakeholders
- Coordinate pest management programs across government agencies, the university and the private sector
- Promote and support privatization of IPM services
- Utilize IPM principles to protect surface and ground water quality in Pennsylvania
- Promote the integration of IPM principles into a holistic approach to farm management, such as the One-Plan program
- Act as liaison to legislative and regulatory bodies
Education and Implementation
- Support the field testing, evaluation, and promotion of new IPM technologies
- Establish education and certification standards for IPM practitioners
- Develop and maintain continuing education programs in IPM for practitioners
- Promote an increase of implementation funding
- Reconcile conflicting government program goals
- Modify regulations to promote IPM tactics
- Utilize cross-compliance systems for regulatory or government programs
- Promote the modification of crop insurance to encourage IPM practices
- Facilitate the development of resident IPM education programs for Pennsylvania colleges, universities, and secondary and primary schools
- Produce IPM informative and educational materials in a variety of media
- Develop the IPM components of certification programs such as Certified Crop Advisor and Pesticide Applicator Training
- Develop outreach programs for the general public
Since pests (insects, diseases, weeds, animals, etc) occur in all environments in Pennsylvania, from natural ecosystems through urban landscapes, PA IPM has the challenge of addressing this wide diversity. Our program has expanded in the areas of school IPM, community IPM (urban communities), greenhouse IPM, and agricultural IPM. We also provide information for green industry professionals, public health sectors, homeowners and home gardeners, and parks & forest managers.